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For what it’s worth, the kerfuffle over the gorilla killed in the Cincinnati Zoo is bringing out the worst in people. Most commenters are taking at least some form of a hypocritical stance on the issue, but it’s actually much bigger than most people care to admit. First, I want to make it clear that I’m not letting the mother of child off the hook. I’m a mother, too . . .

I have a 3-year-old son and a 5-year-old daughter. I know the limits of both. For example, my daughter shot her BB gun, which she got from Santa, ten days after she turned three on Christmas day. My son, though, will be four in September and is far from being able to handle a BB gun. It isn’t a matter of size, it’s a matter of maturity. He’s not where his sister was when she was three and as their mother, it’s my job to know this.

I also know that if my son has to be told “no” more than once. I need to have my eyeballs glued to him almost all the time, not taking selfies of myself at the zoo.

That said, I also value life. Don’t we all? Why even bother carrying a loaded weapon if we don’t want to protect those we love with, God forbid, deadly violence if it comes to that? So if I’m willing to shoot a human who messes with my children. You can bet I would be willing to dispatch a gorilla slinging around my child.

Again, I’m not letting the mother off the hook here. But if my kid somehow accidentally fell into a gorilla enclosure and I saw my daughter being thrown around like a rag doll, I’d have needed to be shot because a tranquilizer wouldn’t have been enough to prevent me from going into that exhibit after her. And they would have had to shoot me prevent me from emptying my gun into that beast.

It’s not hard to decide whose life is more valuable. I choose my child over an animal…any animal, endangered or not.

The point isn’t that the zoo didn’t do the right thing. They did, of course. They did what was best to save a child’s life. Let’s be honest; that gorilla died the day they caged him anyway. If anyone truly cared about that animal, they would have petetioned for his release, not for “justice” after caging him lead to his death.

If we are blaming the mother for losing track of her child — and we should — we also need to blame those who caged a wild animal to begin with. Had he been in the wild where he belongs, no one would even known who Harambe is, nor would they care.

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  1. While I’m firmly on the side of shoot-the-animal-to-save-the-child argument, the real question for me is what would I have done if I were I bystander?

    I could have drawn and fired 16 rounds of 9mm out of my Shield into Harambe, but even assuming a 100 percent hit rate and assuming I could get clean shots without endangering the kid, would that be enough to take him down? The tranq was out of the question because it just would have pissed the gorilla off. Would my measly pops of 115-grain Critical Defense done the same?

    I *might* feel better with a .357 mag revolver with a couple of reloads or perhaps a boatload of .45, but man, in this case, I think anything short of a .30-06 or .45-70 would just piss it off!

    This needs to be a Question of the Day: What caliber for gorilla defensive gun use?

    • Yeah. I’m still curious as to what they shot him with, (make, model, caliber), and where the shot placement was.

      • If it were MY child, I’m with Sara, and I would have jumped in, thus making headshots more of a possibility. I don’t know how thick gorilla skulls are though.

        • If it were my child, I’d have gone into the cage armed with only a rock, if that’s all I had. No rock? Bare hands.

          The gorilla had to die to save the child…full stop. The point is that the child should have never been in there. The question is: cosmic fluke that could happen to the best of us or negligent parent, especially if it’s was a consistently negligent parent. If the latter then maybe the zoo needs to send her the bill?

          I disagree about the caging of the gorilla as only a negative thing. Seeing those animals in a zoo might be the only time anyone ever sees one. To some they are little more than entertainment, to others its the difference between giving a shit about the environment or not. That’s why that animal is in a cage, the 2% that are affected by the majesty of the animals and attempt to care for Nature vs considering it disposable.

        • If it were my child, we wouldn’t be having this conversation. I’d have watched him like a responsible parent.

      • Heres a good article about a typical Zoo dangerous animal response team.

        According to that article it sounds like a pretty crack team and involves some combination of tranquilizer for non-dangerous encounters with a load out of 12ga shottys, and a few big bore bolt actions in something like 375wby. stashed at strategic locations around the park.

        I actually looks they train more rigorously than your average law enforcement officer.

        • A response time of 10 min they considered adequate?

          That kid would have been shredded animal snacks in another less-nice animal’s ‘enclosure’…

      • 260 or 308 to the brain pan would have been plenty from what I’ve read.
        There’s a lot of great material on some of the greatest hunters of all time preferring a 260 caliber in FMJ for elephant due to its light recoil and extreme penetration.

        I think the key factor would be the use of ball, not expanding or fragmenting rounds.

    • .25 acp. Shoot Harambe in the left big toe. He hobbles off crying to his mommy to show her his boo-boo and you bugger off to safety.

    • 12 GA slug to the chest. the head is protected by a really hard bone (like a bear), and the chest makes a much bigger target

    • The .30-06 is a lovely gun, but animals above 300 pounds sometimes just aren’t easy to put down. I’d say a .458 Winchester Mag. – because you could use the same gun in an elephant altercation.

    • What caliber for gorilla defensive gun use?

      I *might* feel better with a .357 mag revolver with a couple of reloads or perhaps a boatload of .45, but man, in this case, I think anything short of a .30-06 or .45-70 would just piss it off!

      Three words: .44 Magnum baby!

      With a six inch barrel and full-power 240 grain jacketed soft points, you have the capability to take down just about anything at close range.

      Last time I went to an event with lots of horses that were somewhat prone to being dangerous, I took the .44 Magnum. And wouldn’t you know that a 1,600 pound horse spooked … jumping over/through a fence and running wild into a crowd of people at that event. Fortunately for that horse, I left the event to run an errand and the horse’s team managed to recapture it before it killed anyone.

      Note: it is next to impossible to conceal a full-size .44 Magnum revolver with 6 inch barrel unless you are wearing a shoulder rig and a jacket of some sort.

    • What caliber for a gorilla self defense scenario?

      The answer is obvious! A 10mm that can take down a polar bear or a .460 Rowland conversion that shoots a .44 mag ballistic equivalent round from most common .45 ACP pistols.

      Just have an extra mag of defensive rounds suitable for a large thick skinned animal that you would carry normally in the woods.

      • I carry a 10mm for “bears” and am confident it will put down a gorilla. However, I only train out to 25 yards with my Glock 20 and while it is Minute of Gorilla, a .44 Magnum with a 8.5″ barrel and sight picture might be the better bet.

        Beggars can’t be choosers, though.

  2. The life of a child has far greater value than all creatures in creation combined, just my two cents.

    • Oh! Then you must be on the side of all the anti’s that claim I must give up all my guns, if it saves one child’s life?

      • Nope, the point I was making is that no animal will ever stand before God and give an account for its life. An animal is without soul and is incapable of sin unlike us. Humans are unique among creation, if this is not so then we have no point or purpose. I carry a gun daily because I value human life, mine and my neighbors.

    • Let’s not get carried away. In such a hypothetical scenario as to choose between a single child and all other creatures in existence, in order for the human race to continue we’d have to choose the latter

  3. I’m with you up until the point where you said that Harambe died when they captured him, and that if people cared about him, they would have petitioned for his release.

    This is both factually incorrect, and completely implausible. Harambe was never captured. Harambe was born at the Gladys Porter Zoo in Brownsville, Texas in 1999. Releasing Harambe into a wild he never knew would have been a death sentence.

    In the wild, gorillas and many other animals are endangered due to poaching and habitat loss. Zoos and wildlife conservation parks use captive breeding programs to insure that endangered species do not go extinct. Most endangered species in captivity were born there.

    Zoos and wildlife conservation parks also provide valuable learning opportunities for children of all ages. I much prefer a living zoo to the “quiet zoo” at Cabelas.

    I’m wondering what you will tell your children when they ask if you can take them to the zoo. I’m hoping that you will take that opportunity to help them learn about the majestic creatures that share our planet with us.

    But at the very least, please get your facts straight before you hit the keyboard next time.

    • I have heard the statistic somewhere that 98% of all species ever alive on Earth are now extinct. Many of what we now consider “endangered” species owe that status to the fact that they no longer hold an important niche in the ecology of their region, which is a result of natural selection – Darwinism – if you cannot adapt to changing conditions you go extinct. At which point nature will re-balance itself.

      Gorillas like Harambe are endangered in their natural habitat because other creatures are forcing them out and making them irrelevant to the ecology. If Harambe were in that environment (born there) he would be in similar danger of being shot to death because a lot of people living there do not want to deal with gorillas in their neighborhood or they see a financial incentive in shooting gorillas. Same thing applies to Bengal tigers.

      Silverback gorillas and Bengal tigers are amazing and beautiful creatures, but they are endangered in their natural habitats for a reason. The only way any of them can possibly survive eventual extinction is their presence in zoos. Nature will eventually make the decision as to their ultimate survival, but how much difference will it make in the long run? I can admire the beauty and diversity of the dinosaurs without actively hoping for a Jurassic Park.

      • You argument works to justify any type of behavior. It removes responsibility for our actions (collectively and individually) under the premise that no matter what choices we make, “nature will re-balance itself”. I’m not disagreeing with the ultimate validity of your premise (we are just small speck of life in the space/time of the universe), but I also think that it has lead humans to commit some pretty horrible acts.

  4. Here’s 2 cents:

    If I own a pool in Texas and have an unlocked gate providing access to neighborhood kids. I am legally responsible for any kid drowning in my pool, even if they were trespassing. Now lets think about this: Zoos everywhere go out of their way to attract children and families. What zoo is worth a damn that designs dangerous animal enclosures that any crumb crunching rug rat has any chance in hell of even getting into. 25% blame on the momma, 75% on the brilliant engineers that designed an enclosure that a dumb kid could crawl into. Just sayin

    • Initially I think that it is plausible to agree with you, however, you also have to take into account that most zoos create their enclosures in order to keep the animal in, and to facilitate good views of the animal. They honestly don’t think that people are going to be foolish enough to climb into the animals enclosure, and then drop down 15 feet into a moat to then get dragged around by a 400 pound gorilla. We have to understand that this is a freak occurrence. A tragedy, but still a freak occurrence. Nothing is going to be foolproof, and no enclosure is going to be both totally secure and easily viewable to the public. So compromises must be made.

      We must also remember that if this enclosure was SO EASY to get into, why hasn’t this been happening for the last 50 years? I heard that nothing even close to this has happened in that zoo since the 60s. We get into our car everyday with the potential of getting into a car crash, we carry guns with the potential of being attacked, both of which are far more likely than this incident.

      Lets not forget how rare this actually is and stop acting like there has to be someone at fault here. The world is not a fair place and sometimes things go wrong. That is why response teams were in place and the right decision was made to save a child’s life.

  5. Hitler was also a child at some point? Life is life. Taking a life is taking a life. One needs to honestly assess what their part was in the act? Careless parents? Existence of zoos? Personally I cringe even at the sight of roadkill. WWJD? Do you see Jesus picking up a rifle to slay the beast, or allowing the child to possibly be mauled to death and proclaiming it part of his Father’s “plan”? Who is to say. Maybe the gorilla is better off not being incarcerated to be ogled and hollered at. Nothing will change one way or the other. People will keep breeding, more of the offspring will be turds than not and sooner or later disease spread like wildfire, sooner than pollution or famine will do any harm. Measles, chicken pox, zika, various flu strains, ebola and more are making a comeback. Just wait till you begin to hear about polio and leprosy and more where it hasn’t been for an age. STD’s are becoming less treatable, along with hospital borne infections. Planet of the apes indeed. Jesus and guns can’t save us.

  6. The mother should be brought up on charges, because frankly that is child neglect if your child is able to surmount multiple barriers to get into an enclosure without you noticing. That being said, the zoo had no choice but to dispatch the gorilla; a sedative wouldn’t have kicked in instantly, and being shot with the dart would likely further enrage the gorilla. It’s absolutely a bad situation but they made a call to save a child’s life.

  7. The mother was at fault, and an extremely endangered animal that was an important part of the breeding program lost its life as a result. The zoo made the correct decision. Neither the animal nor the zoo DART acted maliciously, but a human life was at risk.

    The mother was at fault. Fullstop.

    The crap about caged animals is ignorant nonsense.

    • Chip, I’d recommend a low-voltage electric fence like they use for cattle to keep snot-nose kids from grabbing on to where they shouldn’t as an ‘enhancement’ for that zoo…

    • I’ve had a loosely formed theory in my head for the past week… It’s pretty well established most think the young 20 something adults of today are lacking maturity/responsibility/work ethic/etc compared to previous generations (exceptions to every rule of course). Any correlation between this and the helicopter parenting, never letting a child out of sight, never letting a child take a risk, get hurt, etc that began in the past 20-30 years? Seems like the same crowd blaming the parents would also be the first to condemn the younger generations…

  8. I understand why people are making a big megillah about the gorilla. He was magnificent.

    I also feel sorry for the kid. Based on the quality of parenting he received, the kid has a good chance of ending up just like his father. Dear old dad has been reported to have a criminal history of serious felonies, including burglary and kidnapping. Oh, but he’s turning his life around.

    I have no sympathy for the zoo, who built an enclosure to keep Harambe in, but doesn’t appear to have given much thought to keeping children or anyone else out.

    • Eventually, gorilla child will likely have to be penned up as well. At least he got a short glimpse now of what incarceration looks like.

    • I don’t think anything is going to be idiot proof. The zoo has to make sure the animal doesnt get out, and that people can see the animal. This is no different than anything else. If someone is foolish enough to pick up a handgun with their finger on the trigger and then point it at their own face, bad stuff is sure to follow. It is not up to the manufacturer of the gun to make this impossible, then we are getting into smart gun territory.

      This is a sad event but that enclosure has been safe for over 50 years and no one was easily falling in. This was case of random horror where you had someone not watching their child at a crucial period in time. It is easy to step back and blame the zoo, its easy to stand back and blame the mother, but ultimately it was a whole lot of bad luck. We have all had times were children have gotten out of sight, we were just lucky enough not to be standing next to a deadly animal enclosure.

      • It’s the same zoo that let a polar bear escape earlier this year. Somehow, I don’t think that the keepers are doing their jobs, and the enclosures are not up to snuff.

        • The enclosures are being inspected every year and have been found to be up to standards. I don’t know what to say other than stupid people are going to always hurt themselves. It doesn’t matter how impossible you make it to get into an enclosure, someone will do something stupid. It doesnt matter how impossible you make it for someone to get a gun, they will get one. It doesnt matter how impossible you make it for someone to get out of a moving automobile, someone will do it. This world is a chaotic place, and this particular zoo has not had a life threatening incident for years. You have thousands of dangerous animals and there are sure to be mistakes made but that is precisely why you have response teams such as this. If they can get the animal back into captivity without harm, that is obviously preferable but that was not an option here.

          There is no way to keep someone from getting into an animal enclosure that is open to the air. You can plexiglass the entire enclosure, but you are going to sacrifice animal comfort and viewablity of the animal. They are in the business of providing a sanctuary for animals and putting them on display for the public. Making enclosures that are both bad for the viewing ability of the public and the comfort of the animals for the one freak occurrence every 50 years is foolish.

      • +1
        Kids get out of our sight all the time, animals can be dangerous, people have to respond. This was a random accident/unfortunate scenario. People did what they had to do at the time giving the situation. I think we should stop pointing fingers and bitching about a freak accident that could happen to any of us.

  9. The way I see it zoos are responsible to keep dangerous animals from escaping their enclosures and reaching the visitors, which the Cincinnati Zoo has done with particular enclosure for 30 years. In turn the visitors of the zoos have an equal responsibility to keep themselves and those they are responsible for from entering any enclosures. I wouldn’t be opposed to zoos posting signs at the enclosures that say “No Trespassing! All Violators Are Subject to Lethal Termination Either By Mauling or Sniper Fire!”. I bet that would cause parents to hold on to their kids a bit tighter. Zoos are not babysitters, yet I see parents all the time letting their kids run around like wild animals themselves, with no correction to their behavior. Bottom line is if your child makes it into a Gorilla enclosure, you failed as a parent. You can’t argue that!

    • I blame the parents, but the Cincinnati Zoo also had a polar bear escape in March and I can’t blame any parents for that.

      That zoo has a problem.

  10. I can’t fault the zoo for shooting Harambe, though I would take a very close look at the enclosure they maintained to understand why anyone, let alone a child, could circumvent it. The mother is also to blame, for certain, but I’m not convinced neglect charges are warranted. It sucks, but I personally wouldn’t value a gorillas life over that of a child. Unfortunately, not every story gets a happy ending.

  11. Well, 6 billion people in the world now – and growing daily, and maybe only a few thousand gorillas, who are being killed in the would all the time by poachers for no reason other than a few $’s. Now, is it ok to kill the gorilla to save the kid? – sure, kid was innocent. BUT – we (zoo and parents) needed to plead forgiveness for putting the gorilla into this situation. this has not yet happened – just as a negligent gun discharge – we should have right to own, but need to apologize and ask for forgiveness when an innocent is hurt – your gun, your child, your responsibility for results. Similarly, would we shoot the gorilla if an adult jumped into enclosure with the gorilla as a “prank” (see lion suicide last week)? – i say that would be wrong, responsibility for ones action is the law of good citizens, so let the the gorilla tear the person up until drug takes hold – yes, all human life is not equally valuable (hence we go to war).

    • Literally, millions of children are snagged from their mother’s womb and killed each year and that’s okay. Why is it that the life of a 3 year old is so precious, and the life of a child in the woman has zero value. Even after 21 days when the child in the woman can recognize its mother’s vioice — then too, can it be snuffed out by that mother.

  12. Mrs Tipton,
    I’ll start off with that because we don’t know each other from adam.
    My missus may not have the love of weapons that you have but her fierce motherly instincts tells me that she…like you…wouldn’t fail to do anything to protect her children.
    Don’t let the negativity get to you, people suck and there is always someone wanting to piss in your cornflakes.
    As parents we pray our kids won’t be the kid in the gorilla exhibit, i am on your side when it comes to parenting….watch your kids like an eagle.
    Left on thier own curious kids will do incredibly dumb things.
    And dumb parents sometimes are on the news.
    I think zoo’s have a place in modern day.
    No other place can give the educational experience of a lifetime.
    Many kids go on to work in that field.
    We need to have a place that teaches respect and care of animals.
    This was an accident, if it happened more often then it’s a problem for sure.
    Both sides of this story needs a redo, the zoo clearly needs to make it Houdini proof.
    The parents and all parents need to be at arms length to thier kids next to a freaking gorilla pit. Common sense to most good parents.
    The child survived because the gorilla didn’t kill the kid.
    In the short vid i saw it looked more protective than a killer.(my opinion)
    The zoo did what it did. The end

  13. Injecting the ethics of zoos and animals in captivity into the article is a red herring, at best. Is the mother culpable, sure. At the same time, I’m honest enough to admit this could happen to anyone who has a fearless, young child.

    The author’s discussion of “What would I do?”; however, is a worthwhile. I suspect most of those who have voiced the opinion that Harambe didn’t need to die wouldn’t have been the first to volunteer to coax Harambe away from the boy. Additionally, I suspect the same people wouldn’t want to face the music had they attempted to coax Harambe away and he ripped that kid in half.

    The zoo made a decision to value a child’s life over an animal’s. It’s hard to fault them for that.

    • If I’d venture a guess, I’d say the zoo valued the cost of a law suit and bad PR over the cost of a new gorilla.

  14. a potentially dangerous animal secured by an enclosure that was penetrated by a 4 yo child? I think Harambe the welfare reciepient was living too good to make an honest effort to get out. He had .gov subsidised housing and food and medical care.

    He could have been living wild as a gorilla should had he not been a slacker.

  15. Both mother and zoo should be investigated, maybe the anaconda enclosures only have a screen lid, and as for the mother, well mommas don’t let your babies grow up to be shitheads and teach them some manners, from what I’ve gathered the kid warned that he wanted to go in there, listen to your kid much? Apparently not, my toddler rode happily on daddy’s shoulders, and guess what, she left the zoo after an all day trip without a scratch, regardless of what kind of animal it may be, they are all considered wild for a reason, born into captivity or not, if that thought would have ever crossed mommy’s mind even once there would have been parenting, no dead gorrilla, and no injured kid, so the blame goes to everyone involved with the exception of the gorilla, he was doing his job, being wild, isn’t that why we go to zoo’s? God, jesus, ala or whoever you think the higher spirit may be has no play, mother nature played this game with a crappy result, but maybe a lesson or two have been learned by someone in the mix, the gorrilla didn’t know he was doing anything “wrong”, wear his “fur”, that was a home invasion in his eyes, myself and millions of others would react the same way, violently to protect my own, would I have shot the gorilla if it were my daughter in there? Well that’s not a real possibility, unless I was the one who took her in there myself, so I would have no reason to fire a weapon at any zoo animal, and as many of you have put it, just my two cents, be a good parent and think at least a little bit.

  16. the death of the beast is truly harble. that the child survived the fall and encounter is remarkable and cause for rejoice.
    my girl was a like a well heeled pooch, but the boy wore a harness due to spitting himself into oncoming like a watermelon seed. and still things happen. sometimes you get a hand or foot between the coffee table corner and their noggin, sometimes you come up shy. sliding catch like an outfielder, diving grab like a linebacker.
    it only takes twenty seconds to become a parent (best 20sec of her life) and only then will you realize how overwhelming a challenge it becomes (at least i got to have sex twice). he got away from me at a street fair once, and i consider that a good track record.
    that kid is probably really cool- i like precocious youngsters. until i don’t, but gumption speaks louder than shy. if a momentary lapse occurred by mom, so be it. if it’s constant negligence, well, that’s all around these days.
    still, the incredibly cynical part of me had to struggle to sound even that level- assuming. as i’d rather my tax dollars funded the great primate house than go towards section eight.

    • “…it only takes twenty seconds to become a parent (best 20sec of her life)…”

      The best 20 seconds of her life or you’re s?

      (I’m just going by a fond memory, here… 🙂 )

  17. Meh-mom should have done better.The zoo shoulda’ had a quicker response and critters shouldn’t be locked up-they should fend for themselves in the wild where gorillas are poached daily. Of course I’d dive in to save my son-I have 4. This story is dying-let’s not continue it.Hey- how about America’s favorite muslim-Muhammed Ali? RIP…

  18. Animals in zoos are often sick and or born in captivity. It seems you think that they catch animals in the wild and put them in zoos.

    So you value life, so kill an animal?
    I don’t understand… it was a COMPLETELY avoidable accident. Witnesses say the boy expressed a desire to enter the enclosure.

  19. You talkin ” to ME? I told everyone I NEVER use a sarc tag… “poached daily” is the key phrase.

  20. I wish they had stabbed or strangled the gorilla instead of shooting him, so we wouldn’t have to keep hearing about it on a site that’s supposed to be about guns…

  21. There are a number of zoos with open-air enclosures where people can see animals without intervening barriers. Sure, there are moats, but kids can easily climb short fences and fall in. Why are so many zoos built that way? It’s what people want – to experience magnificent animals in a “natural” habitat.

    My son, at 2 1/2 years old, could out run grandma, grandpa, and the chubby lady in day care. He’s fast and inquisitive, and I don’t see that changing anytime soon. I shake my head at all of the “perfect parents” who’ve never had their kid run into the street, flop into a pond, grab something dangerous, or otherwise cause mischief. My son Emerson has bashed a metal outdoor fireplace with a large rock when he was 3. He actually put the rock through the bottom of the metal fireplace. The new one is outside. He’s ripped tufts of fur off of my Weimaraner and our dog Charlotte. At 18 months he ripped out a 5 foot section of oak quarter round that was tacked into the bottom of our cabinet and firmly secured with finishing nails. As I’m typing this, Emerson is climbing on my neck. The kid loves wrestling, climbing, running and experiencing new things. And he did all of those things while we nearby.

    What’s my point? Kids are fast and inquisitive. Mine might very well be faster and stronger than yours. Maybe not. There’s not a parent in the world with a highly energetic child like mine that hasn’t lived life and briefly experienced something dangerous. Turn your head for a few seconds, and your child has gotten into something. It happens even with good parents. If you don’t have a kid and think you’re such a badass, come take care of one like mine for a few hours. Let’s see how you do.

    I would’ve done my best to distract the gorilla, and plug it in the head if that didn’t work. I’d buy the rifle-wielding employee his favorite drink in a heartbeat. Guns put us at the top of the food chain and I intend to stay there.

  22. Very well said, Sara!

    Absolutely spot on. The animal was relegated to life in a cage when it should have been free to live its life. Yes, the parents were not caring for their child the way they should have, but that was not the child’s fault. And maybe it wasn’t the gorilla’s fault that he fell into the cage, but that isn’t the point. If the day ever comes that we value an animal’s life over that of a child, then the human race has hit the final skid to destruction.

  23. Despite the bravado of the author, post incident, the mother’s actions were correct. Confronting the gorilla, with or without a commonly carried ballistic option, would be more likely to end up with two people and a gorilla dead. Let the dangerous animal team do their job.

  24. so is it better to attack our with standard 9mm concealed handguns or to wait for the zoo kill team in this scenario? Because if we attack with the 9mm and it is ineffective, that may make the situation worse…….

  25. If Magilla Gorilla really wanted to kill the child, that would have happened in 10 seconds.
    I have seen a lot worse with kids and horses. My kids on the horses.
    Hint: The horses are much larger, stronger, and heavier than the gorilla.
    The parents were non-parenting and the entire family should be nominated for a Darwin Award.
    Having gone to the Cincy Zoo the day after the Gorilla Incident, I can say the barriers to the Polar Bears are no better.
    Hint: You really are on the Polar Bear’s menu.

    • I don’t think anyone is questioning whether the gorilla wanted the child dead. I mean, you’re right; but dragging the kid around its enclosure at a sprint like a stuffed animal isn’t much better. I’m not even certain it viewed the child as a child the way it drug the kid around. I’ve never seen one drag their own around in such a way, but then i’ll readily admit I’m not a zoologist.

      At any rate, I got the distinct impression it was treating the kid as a possession.

  26. “Let’s be honest; that gorilla died the day they caged him anyway…

    And that is perhaps the most poignant observation I’ve read in this entire mess of an affair.

    • And that is perhaps the most poignant observation I’ve read in this entire mess of an affair.

      If left to nature, Harambe would never have even existed. He was born in captivity, as the result of a zoo breeding program.

  27. Some of the witnesses reported that the gorilla was simply panicked by the bystanders screaming. If people had maintained some composure it may have turned out differently.

    • You try maintaining composure when you’re watching a 400-ls. gorilla handle a toddler.

      • So I’m a little heavy. There’s no reason to get snippy about it.

        But seriously folks, keeping calm is the best way to survive any animal encounter. And that goes for everyone, including onlookers.

  28. Agree with everything except the “zoos are immoral” trope. How would you like it if someone kidnapped you out of your house, stole all your clothes, brought you to the African wilderness and tossed you out while screaming “Go now! Be free in your natural habitat!” ?

    • This sounds like an excellent (and an ironically fitting) way to reduce a certain majority within our prison system…

  29. I disagree with all. Shoot the Mom. Let the Gorilla raise the child. He will obviously do a better job. The boy will grow up to be a Marvel superhero, Gorilla Man. Mother Nature knows best.

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